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Pre-existance in Sufism[edit]

Although a vague idea of pre-existance can be extracted from various Sufi writings the beliefs mentioned in the article are not beliefs of all sufis , please mention which branches of Sufism hold these beliefs , thanks Pasha Abd 20:20, 25 October 2005 (UTC)


The top of the pre-existence page suggests that the article might be merged with Beforelife, but the latter article doesn't exist.


I agree that this should be merged. There is no reason to keep this a separate article. Str1977 (smile back) 12:36, 19 June 2007 (UTC)


The bit about NDEs at the bottom is very non-NPOV, as it seems to offer an opinion that "NDEs offer a premonition of the afterlife". 23:52, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

LDS Doctrines[edit]

I've added a paragraph in brackets explaining some things that people would probably not otherwise know, and helping them to understand how the modern LDS Church probably sees things. If it is not desirable to have that there in brackets (I'm fine with it being there like that) then if someone could re-write the article there incorporating this information (or at least without making it seem like the modern LDS church changed the doctrines from how they used to be (as they do not believe this), then that would be great. Shoreu 07:19, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

While we are on the topic of LDS Doctrines I would like to correct a small inaccuracy in the section just prior to the LDS section. So LDS doctrine does teach of an actual spiritual creation by God, but that in terms of time it is a much greater time earlier than the time one lives on earth. I'm not a common editor so I'm going to go ahead and edit it. If I mess up in any respects to wikipedia policy please have understanding and make what ever modifications are needed. just a reader 17:04, 28 March 2014 (UTC) , call me Jason.

Ok, now I see you have a quote in the Mormonism section that is going to look like a contradiction to what I was about the write, mostly because there is a slight misinterpretation of that quote. The issue that I'm seeing we have in front of us is that we are going to have to write a little bit more to get proper nuance. The issue is that quote talks about intelligences and the surrounding text makes the mistake of seeing that as the same as a spirit. So I will go ahead and describe Mormon doctrine here and you guys can use it because I'm not a great writer, of course with the quotes there if not more. Ok, so the Mormon concept is that the spirit of humans are created by God and that the great majority of what makes a spirit a spirit is from God but that there is a component used called an intelligence. Not much is talked about the properties of an "intelligence." This subjects not really all that important in Mormonism so we don't really care. Of what we do know or what I can conclude is that it does have some level of entropy and existent from the beginning, possibly or probably matter of some form but absolutely could not be atomic or subatomic. Mormons really like science especially modern particle science ;). If that seems like after the fact doctrine it's really not. So anyway that source of information was combined with God's own capacity for creation to create a spirit. That existed for a long time and had conciseness and the capacity to make decisions. Then bodies came next for some but not all. just a reader 17:31, 28 March 2014 (UTC) , call me Jason.

Jewish Pre-mortal Life and Immortal Souls[edit]

I would really like to see some sources on the Jews not believing in a pre-mortal life and immortal souls before the Greeks and whatever. Is this knowledge, or just knowledge that there are no current records of such suitable for such a claim in an encyclopedia fit for all denominations? Basically, I want to know if there is anything in Jewish records that specifically refutes the possibility; specifically, I want to know about records that took place during times when the Jews followed the then living prophets of the Bible. Anyway, the Old Testament does not seem to refute the possibility; in fact, it seems to support it, to me. Also, does Jews in this context refer just to those from the tribe of Judah, or does it refer to all of the house of Israel and the ancestors of Jacob (Isaac, Abraham, etc.)? Shoreu 07:39, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

The whole section on Judaism is completely fanciful and unfounded in Jewish theology. The whole section should be deleted, since it has no basis whatsoever. Judaism teaches that the soul is eternal, not created. חלק אלו-ה ממעל Job 31:2. (talk) 05:31, 14 January 2015 (UTC)
Further reference... See - (talk) 05:40, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

Restructuring the article[edit]

The intro section seems to be quite good and succinct. The body of the article could probably be improved by an historically-oriented sequenced presentation, for example, beginning with Primitive religions,

followed by Hinduism's reincarnation,

and the belief of Ancient Egyptian religion about the origin and nature of the spirits of human beings and gods,

explicit suggestive texts from the Old Testament (Abrahamic religion), those suggestive of support for the possibility and those suggestive of denial of it,

texts of Zoroastrianism,

then Chinese philosophy,

Hindu philosophy,

Greek philosophers like Plato and Plotinus,

Buddhism's Bodhisattvas,

key Roman philosophers (BCE),

Christian New Testament texts, those suggestive of support for the possibility and those suggestive of denial of it,

Talmud and Kabbalah,

early Christian writers like Origen and Tertullian,

Alchemists like Celsus and Paracelsus,

the decision of Christian Ecumenical Council(s) on the issue,

Islam (Qur'an, Islamic writers),


Thomas Aquinas (in particular the Summa Theologica),

the Reformation,

the Enlightenment period,

New England Transcendentalists like Henry David Thoreau and Walt Whitman

and only then present the views of Mormonism and Western esotericism, in their actual historical context.

The present section on Mormonism could be abbreviated to the best highlights from that tradition. It seems to me that it's too extensive right now in its present form for inclusion in a general article on "pre-existence" and probably belongs more to a separate article on the subject of Mormon beliefs, and it's inclusion here as part of the development of Christianity is somewhat problematical—the historical sequencing as suggested here would be more neutral.

Finally, I'm not sure whether or not Transhumanism's view(s) would fit. --LittleOldManRetired (talk) 13:38, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

Preparatory re-sequencing of text in article[edit]

I went ahead with a preliminary re-sequencing of statements in the article without changing them (they're verbatim as written), revising only the order in which they appear in the text, and according to a more historical chronology (like re-collating a loose stack of numbered-pages of a manuscript that accidentally dropped off a desk onto the floor and got mixed up). I'll leave the revised article just as it is for now, to give you guys a chance to look at the suggestion I made above, and compare the preliminary result, and make whatever other changes and corrections you think the article needs. Meanwhile—I'm going to take a break ('bout a week).

"Citations needed"—Some of the citations needed in the text can be gotten from the list of External link articles. (Read 'em and you'll find 'em.) I just didn't think this is the time to do that, yet. --LittleOldManRetired (talk) 21:46, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

The Baha'i Faith[edit]

The pre-existence of the souls of Revelators or Manifestations of God is attested to in the Kitab-i-Aqdas, the central text of the Baha'i Faith, by its Prophet-Founder Baha'u'llah. The text suggests that the "School of Transcendent Oneness" or "Primary School" (also "School of God") as well as the prophets who dwelt and were schooled there pre-dated the Creation itself:

...tell of the time when He Who is the Dayspring of Divine Unity purposed to direct His steps towards the School of Transcendent Oneness... We, indeed, set foot within the School of inner meaning and explanation when all created things were unaware. We saw the words sent down by Him Who is the All-Merciful... Were we to address address Our theme by speaking in the language of the Kingdom, we would say: 'In truth, God created that School ere He created heaven and earth, and We entered it before the letters B and E were joined and knit together.'

What translates into English from Arabic as the letters B and E being joined and knit together refers to the act of Creation. The Arabic word for "be" is "kun," so in Arabic, the letters being joined and knit together are kaf and nun.

The Bab, the Forerunner of Baha'u'llah and the Inaugurator of the Baha'i Dispensation, once addressed a tablet to "Him Who Will be made manifest" (Baha'u'llah) in these words: May the glance of Him Whom God shall make manifest illumine this letter at the Primary School. Many of the Bab's followers, who were often told by the Bab to await "Him Whom God shall make manifest" took the phrase "primary school" literally and rejected Baha'u'llah's claim to be that One promised by the Bab. Baha'u'llah, being two years older than the Bab, would not have been in a literal primary school at the same time.

Baha'u'llah here explains that the reference is to events transpiring in the spiritual worlds beyond this plane of existence.

[1] Cite error: A <ref> tag is missing the closing </ref> (see the help page). [2] Minissa (talk) 00:56, 20 November 2012 (UTC)

Pre-existence vs. Preexistence, and Including both for searches[edit]

The article, as of yesterday, had only the spelling "pre-existence", so I added a line to say that some might spell it "preexistence", which is certainly a spelling for a related English word. However, an editor thought it better to put that spelling in the initial list of what this article is called, and removed my edit line. I am not sure that this is preferable. I included the word so that searches for the word would hit the article, but there may be some technical difference between using a hyphen and not using a hyphen. This is why I didn't put that spelling in the list at the top of the article myself. While I'd like the word to be kept according to however theologians tend to use it – whatever that might be – I think it's also important and even crucial to include the regular spelling of the word "preexistence" so that searchers can find the article. :) Any experts on the topic of "Pre-existence" wish to weigh in? Thanks. Misty MH (talk) 22:15, 5 May 2013 (UTC)

Preexistence is a redirect to this page. Editor2020 (talk) 00:42, 6 May 2013 (UTC)
How then do people get to the definition for the regular word "preexistence"? (I know there's a Dictionary part of Wikipedia, but it doesn't seem to come up obviously.) Misty MH (talk) 11:37, 7 May 2013 (UTC) :D

Section on Origen[edit]

I did not remove any of Origen's statements from this article. However, Origen is not an accepted Church Father for the majority of Christians, although he is popular in some small circles, especially among those who consider themselves to be particularly better-educated than most people. That still doesn't make him a normative voice for modern Christian doctrines as a whole. He was condemned by name at the Second Council of Constantinople. Likewise, his doctrine of pre-existence of souls was explicitly mentioned and condemned by this council [1]. This council is still accepted as normative by Roman Catholics, Eastern Catholics, and its principles are likewise far more likely to be accepted by a large number of Protestants than not. I did not censor Origen's words, but I did put them in the context of Christian practice as a whole--including the practice of the non-extremely-erudite.Dogface (talk) 00:13, 23 July 2014 (UTC)

placed by God into the body[edit]

Shouldn't this say something else considering the article is about the concept of pre-existance across all faiths and not just Abrahamic faiths? Maybe a lowercase G on god, or maybe just "placed into the body"?--Amantis (talk) 22:02, 23 April 2015 (UTC)

I agree, and I've made the change. Stuff like that shouldn't be controversial, so be bold!Remember the dot (talk) 18:50, 24 April 2015 (UTC)

Title and main subject should treat "Pre-mortal existence"[edit]

The term "pre-existence" applies to something that was before existence, which is a nonsensical idea. This article describes existences before mortal existence. "Pre-mortal existence" is more accurate and less confusing than "pre-existence."

I propose the title and references throughout the article be changed to reflect this. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Lagomen (talkcontribs) 19:21, 25 July 2016 (UTC)

You make a fair and valid point. I second the motion, even though I'm a little late in doing so. --Jgstokes (talk) 03:18, 4 August 2016 (UTC)
    • ^ Baha'u'llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, Baha'i Publications Australia, 1993, pp. 83-84, paragraphs 175-177.
    • ^ Baha'u'llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, Baha'i Publications Australia, 1993, page 247, note 185.